Chapter 1009: Return of the Upgrade Technique, Control of Soulforce!

“Ah!!”

Bai Yunfei’s hand threw the stone away from him in instinctual fear.

“What…what was that?!”

He stared frightfully at the thrown primal stones. He was deeply confused. He didn’t know what that notification that had popped into his head or why it even appeared.

“Woof?” Lao Sha gave Bai Yunfei a curious look. It didn’t know what was going on either.

All Bai Yunfei did was stare blankly at the stone. For a good while, he just stood there. Then he walked over to it. He hesitated for a brief moment before carefully picking it up.

The notification he got earlier appeared back in his mind, but Bai Yunfei was prepared for it this time. He stared at the stone carefully before taking in the information he just received.

The notification was describing the properties of the item in his hand.

“What is this equipment grade, elemental affinity, and…attack? Upgrade? What do those even mean?”

When the word ‘upgrade’ was muttered, Bai Yunfei’s eyes flew wide open! Something within his body was starting to flow out of it and brought forth a pain he never felt before!

“Aghh!!!”

The capillaries in his eyes became well-pronounced as Bai Yunfei doubled up in pain. His entire face was flushed with red as he clenched his teeth. The primal stone in his hand was dropped so he could clutch at his head with both hands and fall to the ground convulsing!

There was so much pain! It felt like his head was about to blow up and tear his soul to bits!

The development this time frightened Lao Sha and the dog began to bark repeatedly at Bai Yunfei, but he couldn’t hear the dog.

The Soul Sentinel Scarf on his forehead began to light up. Its light flowed inwards to cover his entire body before dissipating from sight again. And somehow, Bai Yunfei was beginning to calm down.

“Huff…huff…hufff….”

He was on his hands and knees on the ground, panting hard to himself as he tried to understand what in the world had just gone on with him.

“What…what is going on here!!”

Confusion was rampant in his mind, but Bai Yunfei forced those feelings down so he could try to think this out rationally. It seemed like so many things were happening to his body ever since he ‘woke’ up. He couldn’t even keep up with these changes and he felt like it was a race between his body and his mind to see how many new things he would be able to handle before he’d descend into madness… 

Bai Yunfei sat upright so as to better regulate his own breathing. It took him a while before his heart rate finally died back down to regular levels, but when it did, Bai Yunfei decided to pick up the primal stone yet again.

Equipment Grade: High Human
Elemental Affinity: Earth
Upgrade Level: +1
Attack: 410
Additional Attack: 40
Soul Compatibility: 1%
Upgrade Requirement: 80 Soulpoints

Another notification popped up in his head, but it was slightly different than before.

“Upgrade level of +1?”  What in the world did this mean? Was this stone somehow ‘stronger’ than it was before?

He ruminated on the new things he learned for a while and how things even got to this point. He remembered thinking about the word ‘upgrade’ before everything went downhill. Something about that word had to be the catalyst for things. He was determined not to even say this word though. He wasn’t ready for a second helping of pain.

The notification had to have come from these stones. That’s what Bai Yunfei thought until he put down the stone and accidentally touched the bracer on his right hand.

Equipment Grade: Low Heaven
Elemental Affinity: Fire
Upgrade Level: +12
Attack: 2236
Defense: 2580
Additional Attack: 2400
Additional Defense: 2600
Soul Compatibility: 45%
+10 Additional Effect: Summon a fireball with strength no greater than 50% of this equipment's attack.
+12 Additional Effect: Steal 10 points of the enemy's attributes (Strength, Spirit, Endurance, and Agility) up to 10 seconds. Cannot steal over 50% of the enemy's original attributes.
Upgrade Requirement: 160 Soulpoints

A notification of the stats of the Ardent Sun Glove appeared in Bai Yunfei’s mind.

That was when Bai Yunfei realized: This notification wasn’t due to the stone’s properties, but the ‘power’ that came out from him!

“But why? Is it because I drank that strange liquid?” Bai Yunfei tapped his chin with a single finger. “And…why is there so much information to this glove?! I don’t know how much this is, but a number like that is super high, isn’t it? And…what’s an ‘additional effect’?”

The questions were piling onto him faster than the answers. Another question was already forming on his mind.

“A fireball…what does that even mean…?”

Bai Yunfei was muttering to himself about this +10 additional effect when all of a sudden, the Ardent Sun Glove began to shine with a bright red light. A fireball appeared out of nowhere and exploded against the wall ahead of him, leaving behind a small crater!

“Wha—!!”

Bai Yunfei’s eyes bulged out from his eye sockets as he let out a strangled cry of shock!

Like the last time when he upgraded the primal stone, the caves echoed with the sounds of his cry before dying away into silence… 

“Huf…huff…”

Bai Yunfei fell back against the wall behind him. The muscles in his throats were bulging as he forced himself to bite down the curse on his lips. What in the devil was going on here?!

The time it took to recover from this shock was longer than before. Bai Yunfei was determined not to touch upon this topic again, whether it was ‘upgrading’ or even ‘effects’!

There was no way he’d know about what was going on with him without his memories or with the presence of another soul cultivator. His soulforce was being limited!

Both upgrading the stone and using the additional effect of the Ardent Sun Glove had him losing soulforce. And because of that, he came under a great deal of pain he wasn’t expecting to feel.

If the soul was injured and the usage of soulforce was being restricted, then something like this would occur!

Bai Yunfei’s current situation was a very serious one. For him, using even a little bit of soulforce felt like someone was tearing a piece of flesh away from his body. That alone was enough to tell anyone just how painful it was.

Bai Yunfei was well and truly done with thinking about this. Excavating a few primal stones, he wrapped them up for Lao Sha and carried it over his back. Together, he and Lao Sha stepped out from the cave to exit out into the world.

It wasn’t until he was back out in fresh air that Bai Yunfei let out a sigh of relief. Breathing in this air was relaxing, and Bai Yunfei could finally feel at ease. The fact that he managed to find what the villagers were looking for was enough to make him happy. 

He looked around the mountain one last time to see if there was anything else he might’ve missed before preparing to find his way back.

Bai Yunfei looked up. The brightness of the sky was indicating that it was nearing high noon. If he found the villagers soon it’d be possible to make it back to the village before tomorrow.

“But…how should I even go about looking for everyone…?”

The same old question resurfaced in Bai Yunfei’s mind. Him not being able to find the villagers was the entire reason why he was stuck here on this mountain. He was afraid that he might get himself even more lost if he tried to find his way back himself. And if he couldn’t find the villagers, what would happen to him; would he have to live his life here on this mountain like some kind of barbarian?

“Lao Sha…do you know how we’re going to make it back?”

Bai Yunfei asked the lazily-walking dog, though he didn’t expect an actual answer.

It was just a question asked in jest, a line Bai Yunfei wanted to say so he could vent. But Lao Sha looked up to give him a look as if understanding his plight. With a wag of his tail, the dog strode for the path on the left.

It walked a few steps before noticing that Bai Yunfei was still standing at his original spot. It looked back at him then as if to say, “Let’s hurry up, don’t you want to go back to the village?”

For the umpteenth time that afternoon, Bai Yunfei was left speechless at the situation.

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